Saturday, February 22, 2014

Notes on Fascism and the Future 2

Greer talks a strong line about curing the ignorance of the public. I don't think public ignorance is curable. They, quite rationally, don't care enough to do the necessary work. And a 100 IQ means it is a lot of work, even neglecting the greater burden of illusions.

"That last word has been bandied around so freely over the years since then that it’s probably necessary to stop here and discuss what it means. A totalitarian political system is one in which the party in power claims the right to rule every sphere of life: political, religious, artistic, scientific, sexual, and so on through all the normally distinct dimensions of human existence."
I have a shorter definition. In a totalitarian state, it is legal for the sovereign to legislate anything. Therefore, democracy is inherently totalitarian. You might retort with 'free speech', but it is legal to amend the constitution. One reason I buy Moldbug's equivalence of National Socialism, Communism, and Democracy is that they share totalitarianism in common.

I contrast with one of Nick Szabo's areas of expertise, medieval England, or indeed common law in general.
"More specifically, it’s supposed to be the far end of that side of the spectrum, the thing that’s more conservative than the conservatives, just as—to the contemporary American right—Communism is the far end of the left side of the spectrum, the thing that’s more liberal than the liberals."
Last week I talked about a way AIACC is false. Here is a way it is true. If 'communist' means 'radical left,' then except with reference to the Overton window of 2014 and its intimate neighbours, the Republicants are communist. The Demobrats are infinitesimally more communist.
"These three features are the things that fascist movements and regimes consistently rejected. The first is Marxism, the second liberalism, and the third—the hot-button one—is conservatism."
As per last week, right and left are rhetorical traps. Both communists and fascists, in either precise or American meanings, would shriek if subjected to medieval England's legal systems, just as conservatism and fascism can only war with each other. The systems are in the sky or underground somewhere by the left-right coordinate system.

Jim has said there's one left and a thousand rights. But then 'left' is a code word for proggie and 'right' doesn't mean anything.

This is why it's so hard to make a good argument for Nazism being right or left. It's not progressivism, so it must be right. But it's also highly opposed to conservatism, so it must be left. Or maybe the whole spectrum is a scam and no consistent reading can be got out of it because it's inherently inconsistent.
"vied to see who could come up with more excuses for centralizing power in the executive branch of the federal government."
Pity Greer missed the memo about bureaucratic government. Perhaps someone more diplomatic than I could forward it to him?
"When Hitler ranted about the will of das Volk, for example, he was simply borrowing Rousseau’s notion of the general will of the people, which both men believed ought to be free from the pettifogging hindrance of mere laws and institutions."
Totalitarianism is a legally unconstrained sovereign.
Of course a good Anarcho-formalist is agnostic about whether totalitarianism is good or bad. Rather this is the first step to discovery: calling things by their right names.
"Even to the extent that labels such as “left” and “right” apply to the n-dimensional continuum"
First. Less-not-first, at least.
"When fascism succeeds in seizing power, in other words, it’s not a right-wing movement, or for that matter a left-wing one. It seizes the abandoned middle ground of politics,"
If Demobrats are left and Republicants are right, then by 'middle ground' he means 'far right,' and also way off to the side. Except for the raisins of radical leftness.
"That’s the secret of fascism’s popularity—and it’s the reason why an outbreak of full-blown fascism is a real and frightening possibility as America stumbles blindly into an unwelcome future."
I feel Greer is failing to justify seeing fascism as frightening, or indeed noticeably worse than what democracy descriptively is.

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